WARNING: Story contains graphic content
A MELBOURNE man has been charged after social media footage of a kangaroo having its throat repeatedly slashed emerged.
The video, posted on the Chinese social media service QQ, shows a Chinese-speaking man approaching an injured Eastern Grey kangaroo with a hunting knife. Restraining the animal with his foot and a hand on its tail, he then hacks at its neck about 18 times.
"Just face it, that's your fate. let me finish this as quickly as I can," he is heard to say.
People - including the person filming the incident on a smartphone - can be heard laughing in the background.
The video has had almost 4 million views since it was posted.
Eastern Grey kangaroos are a protected species.
A video of a man stabbing a kangaroo to death is being investigated by the RSPCA
The Victorian Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) has issued a statement saying it arrested a 43-year-old man Wednesday night after being given information by the public. Several firearms and knives were also seized from his property in the Melbourne suburb of Ringwood.
The man has paid bail and has been ordered to face the Ringwood Magistrates Court. He faces a $7900-$38,000 fine and six to 24 months jail.
"Unfortunately sometimes videos get played and played by that many people for the wrong reasons, but hopefully this one can have the right message come out of it," DELWP manager of compliance operations Glenn Sharp said.
"If we can reach back to that same number of people with the message of a person has been arrested, a person is facing charges and this is illegal to do, then that would be even better."
DELWP says it is continuing to investigate other individuals who may have been involved in the attack.
World Animal Protection Senior Campaign Manager Ben Pearson issued a statement saying: "The killing of this kangaroo is barbaric and cruel and we expect the police to prosecute the man involved. It is hard to understand how anyone could commit such a brutal act, let alone film it."